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Agreement on Composition of Campbell Soup Company Board

11/27/2018

The contentious and acrimonious conflict over the composition of the Board of Campbell Soup Company and Third Point LLC has been resolved by the addition of two independent directors proposed by Third Point.  The incumbents will be Sarah Hofstetter, President of Global Information an analytics company and Kurt Schmidt former director and CEO of Blue Buffalo. 

 

In terms of the agreement Third Point LLC will participate in the recruitment of a CEO and will present views at two meeting of the Board over the next 12-months.  Third Point LLC has also agreed to a 12-month standstill and will dismiss litigation against Campbell Soup.  A third director will be appointed in May 2019. 

 

Keith McLoughlin interim president and CEO of Campbell Soup stated, “We are pleased to have reached an agreement with Third Point that is in the best interest of Campbell Shareholders and we look forward to welcoming both Sarah and Kurt to our Board of Directors.”  He added, “We will continue to maintain an active and productive dialogue with all our Shareholders including Third Point as we execute our strategic plan and build a stronger and more focused company that creates long-term value for shareholders.”

 

Daniel S. Loeb, CEO of Third Point LLC stated, “Our Company looks forward to working collaboratively with Campbell to improve value for all Shareholders at this important time for the Company.”

 

The conflict relates to suboptimal performance by Campbell Soup Company which has endured a YTD 17 percent decline in share price. This is ascribed by minority shareholders to inappropriate purchase of companies by the previous CEO, Denise M. Morrison who promoted an “organic and natural” orientation for the company which proved financially disastrous.

 

Third Point which owns 6 percent of the equity in Campbell Soup Company has made common cause with family shareholder George Strawbridge Jr., splitting the solidarity of family-related members of the Board who collectively control 41 percent of the company.

 

It appears that the strategic plan crafted by the Board, emphasizing traditional products and divesting certain assets will restore return on equity and provide for future growth in a highly competitive market.  Third Point LLC had advocated for either outright sale of the company or dismemberment. Both alternatives were opposed by Family-directors.